Friday, July 11, 2014

Food on Friday: 2 recipes with za'atar chicken and veggies

Nothing says summer more than beautiful, colorful salads and fresh wraps.  Add in some Middle Eastern spices and you have the perfect light weeknight dinner and lunch for the next day.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Back from hiatus (the last 7 months)

Top to bottom, left to right: Valentine's Day flowers on a lovely day I never got to say thank you for; a coffee and a cake at the most adorable cafe; a gate in my new neighborhood; a weekend getaway; this morning with my best friend at Christmastime; spring in Germany; a day trip with a good friend who moved away; the sun setting in Paris; packing my bags for that trip; and meeting my mom there; my man JJ at Christmas; early summer in Nürnberg; a corner of my new home; the Eiffel Tower and me; fresh mushrooms from the farmer's market; Fränkisches Bierfest and some delicious red beer; World Cup public viewing; Beer festival; another bier festival ;-) and my mom and aunts visiting Germany! 

I have started this post and ended it almost a million times, not really sure where to start, what to say, what to share and what not to.  I have been putting it off, but I feel like every day my desire to write and share grows stronger and stronger.  So much has changed in the last 7 months and in my struggle to process it all, I have started to miss having this space.

I wish I could say that all of the changes were positive, but that's just not the case.  They were at first; I stopped writing at first because I was just enjoying things so much that I didn't really want to spend the time on my computer.  But then, as quickly as that started, it was gone.  I found love again and then I lost it....again.  And for all the ways that I know I am partially to blame for that, this time around has been the most devastating, heartwrenching experience. The previous heartbreak compounds this one and it's all been almost too difficult to bear.

In the last few weeks, I have slowly started to come out of the heavy fog of it.  I am starting to see things more clearly and understand not only some of the mistakes I made, but also the changes I need to make in my life and the person I want to be in the future.  My heart still hurts, but in a way this has been good for me, a wake up call of sorts.  Perhaps, at some point soon, I will share a little more.

In the meantime, I have compiled some pictures which represent moments that I have been particularly thankful for in the last 7 months.  These are the little glimmers of light in the dark and I feel blessed to have had these lovely moments.

Oh, and I moved, yet again.  I love my new place and am so, so, so glad I have it!  Here is a sneak peak, with more photos to come soon!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Welcome to my new home

If every cloud has a silver lining, this is most certainly mine.  Every day I fall more in love with this place and it's honey colored floors, huge windows and teeny tiny kitchen.  The way the light shines in in the morning, the clang clang of the old pipes and the adorable little Hausmeisterin on the 4th floor who is always so friendly, chats with me in German about life and wears her slippers everywhere she goes.  Ich fühle mich wohl. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

Food on Friday: Pumpkin risotto with herbs and nuts

About a month ago, on a crisp October Friday evening, I had a dear friend of mine over for a cooking/pigging out session and we made pumpkin risotto.  It was the bomb.  End of story.

…Just kidding…With Thanksgiving coming up next week, I thought it the perfect time to post this recipe so that you have something to make if vegetarians happen to be coming over for dinner (make it with vegetable stock in that case).  This risotto is creamy and delicious and contains all of the wonderful and bold flavors of autumn.  It would be perfect served alongside chicken or turkey, but is actually a perfect main dish on its own.

I used this recipe but didn't puree one half of my pumpkin.  I just put the chunks in.  I also added some leftover mushrooms I had, fresh herbs, some small and crispy bits of sausage and roasted hazelnuts on top!  For the herbs, I added fresh sage and a bit of thyme.  My friend, a meat eater, wanted to add the sausage and I have to say, it really added a richness to the dish.  You could also use bacon pieces or something similar.  We garnished with parmesan and roasted hazelnuts, which was as delicious as it was pretty! Then we stuffed our faces with it and watched like 6 episodes of Revenge. It was pretty heavenly.  I love friends.  And I love Friday evenings.  Hope you're enjoying yours!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Snapshots of the new apartment

Just a few details from the new place, how it is coming along and what I have been up to the past week or so.  There is still a lot to do and fix up around here, but I am really loving my new space.  I christened it this weekend with the first brunch and I must say it was one of the best brunches I have made before.  I served fig goat cheese and Serrano ham with pear and herbs and a delicious herbed potato and butternut squash hash.  It was so delicious and cozy and a perfect first brunch in the new place!

Only having one room and a tiny kitchen is taking a bit of getting used to and I am still going through the (emotional) process of saying goodbye to the old place, but I think this place is going to do me some good.  I will give you a tour soon, I promise.  Hope everyone had a nice start to the week today!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Saying goodbye: last pictures of the old apartment

I moved out of our old apartment last weekend with a lot of stress, emotion and heartbreak.  But, before I started packing, I took a few last pictures of the place all cleaned up.  These photographs are my last memories of an apartment I loved, of my home and of the life I thought I would have.  They're so pregnant with lost hopes and dreams.  But, there is a certain beauty to that, as well, I guess.

I am in my new place now and I absolutely adore it.  It couldn't be more mine.  I love everything about it, from it's old rusty pipes and strange, old-building noises, to the tiny kitchen with hardly any room to turn around and the pretty multi-toned hardwood floors.  I know that this isn't going to be the easiest chapter in my life, but I feel so blessed to be experiencing it in a space that feels like me, that feels like love, that feels like a new beginning.

Thanks to everyone who has written me kind words on here as I have been going through this.  It means more than you know to me.